Strengthening cooperation between Uzbekistan and the Republic of Korea

16.11.2015

Strengthening cooperation between Uzbekistan and the Republic of Korea

On November 11-13, a series of lectures and seminars was held in Samarkand and Tashkent to discuss further development of cooperation between Uzbekistan and the Republic of Korea, supported by the Governments of both countries.

On November 11, a series of lectures was organized in Samarkand devoted to "KSP Projects for strengthening the capacity of transport of the Republic of Uzbekistan." The experts of local offices of ministries and agencies were invited to participate in the discussion. Participants could also learn more about the road policy, the development of ICT, the system and planning of public and urban transport in the Republic of Korea.

On November 12, a seminar on "Cooperation in the transport sector between Uzbekistan and the Republic of Korea, aimed at mutually beneficial development in Eurasia." was held in "Wyndham" Tashkent hotel. The opening remarks were given by the Deputy Minister of Economy of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Mr. Shukhrat Ismailov, by the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Korea to Uzbekistan, Mr. Lee Wook-heon, by Secretary General of the Society of Economic and Social Affairs of Korea, by the Head of the Ministry of Land Resources of the Republic of Korea, and by the Director of the Transport Research Center of the Republic of Korea.

CER Research Coordinator, Mr. Bakhtiyor Ergashev, was invited as an expert to make presentation in the frameworks of the session on "The cooperation plan of the KSP Projects in the fields of transport, infrastructure, logistics between the Republic of Korea and the Republic of Uzbekistan."

The characteristic of the development of the transport sector in Uzbekistan between 1991 and 2015 was given in his Policy Paper on "Midterm and long-term perspectives of transport and transit in the context of economic transformation in Uzbekistan: problems and solutions". The expert noted that the volume of cargo transportation in the country has almost doubled since 2005, and this growth is mainly provided for the road transport sector, which is presented by 85% of private carriers.

Transport is one of the key sectors, giving a high multiplier effect to the economy. In recent years, the transport sector has become one of the main recipients of investment. In 2011-2015, about $7 billion has been allocated on the development of transport infrastructure.

CER expert also noted that the transport industry of the country has been facing a number of challenges which should be responded promptly and effectively. To compete in the market of Central Asian traffic, it is necessary to carry out reasonable tariff policy. Currently, the cost of road and rail freight traffic in Uzbekistan is relatively high. It is necessary to increase the efficiency and reliability of transport and to provide a "network effect" - the transport connectivity of the country. It requires the diversification of transport routes and infrastructure development of transport corridors through Uzbekistan. It is necessary to optimize the procedures of customs clearance of export-import and cargo transit, but without detriment of safety.

Investment priorities for transport sector should take into account the following aspects: faster growth of demand for road freight transportation, increasing demand for combined shipment and the growing demand for transportation within the country, with simultaneous growth of exports and imports, as well as transit.

To complete the seminar, representatives relevant ministries and departments of Uzbekistan and the Republic of Korea participated in the discussion.

On November 13, 2015 another seminar on "The cooperation plan on export projects of processed agricultural products" was held in Tashkent "City Palace" hotel. This event was opened by welcoming speeches of the First Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Water Resources of Uzbekistan, Mr. Akram Aripov, the Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Republic of Korea to Uzbekistan, Lee Wook-heon, and the Deputy Director of the Research Center for the agricultural products of the Republic of Korea.

The seminar was also attended by representatives of ministries and agencies of Uzbekistan and the Republic of Korea.

One of the key presentations was given by CER expert, Mr. Alisher Azamavot, on "Uzbekistan's efforts to promote foreign trade in the sphere of trade facilitation."

He noted that the active work of the Uzbek government in improving business environment helped improve the rating of the republic in the annual report of the World Bank "Doing Business" for 2016 by 54 positions. Uzbekistan joined the top ten countries in the world that have made the best progress in improving the regulatory environment for business.

The reforms for facilitation of foreign trade activities are carried in Uzbekistan in following main directions:

  • shortening the list of documents for customs registration of import and export;
  • electronic version of documents and the simplification of the technical regulation of trade;
  • modernization of customs office through automation of procedures.

As a result of trade facilitation, most of customs declarations are made now through automated information system of electronic declaration of goods; business entities carry out data entry of foreign trade contracts in electronic form through a single portal of interactive government services. Monitoring of foreign trade contracts was also made easier, and now it is carried out by currency control agencies and the authorized banks through the Unified electronic information system of foreign trade operations.

You can find CER presentations on the following links:

"Transport Sector of Uzbekistan as a factor of economic transformation in a long term"

"Improving foreign trade procedures in Uzbekistan" (Russian version).